Blacksmith: The Tempering Begins With One’s Flesh - Chapter 1
9 September 2999.
Area 5, Earth.
After a series of global transformations, the earth’s spiritual energy returned. As the world was filled with spiritual energy, everyone began to turn toward martial arts again.
Soon after, though, the demonic beasts rose to prominence.
Humans were nowhere near as powerful as these beasts, and so they were slaughtered en masse.
Their homes were destroyed and conquered.
Eventually, people all over the world united as one and set up different areas to inhabit.
Lin Feng, a transmigrator, was a blacksmith in Area 5. He had his own smithy and relied on his ironmongery for a living.
When he first arrived here, he had once harbored his own dreams of grandeur. He dreamt that he could one day because a powerful warrior and repel the demonic beasts’ attacks.
In reality, however, he spent his entire life as a blacksmith. Still, he could find some solace in that. Since he made countless weapons for the frontline fighters, he was indirectly helping humanity fight back against the beasts too.
His past was still fresh in his mind.
Today was his hundredth birthday.
He could feel the end of his life approaching.
Nevertheless, he had one last order to complete, one requesting necessary equipment for the scouting team sent ahead to fight the beasts.
Right now, he was going to complete that order and made sure he died with no regrets.
He lit the flames and added lava coal to increase the temperature of his forge.
He poured in the material and splashed water over the mold.
He raised his iron hammer and swung it down with all his strength.
At the same time, his advanced age meant that every swing took a heavy toll on him.
Even so, when he remembered how the fighters pushing back the beasts needed the equipment he made, he just clenched his teeth and soldiered on!
His mind was willing, but his flesh was weak.
Every time he brought down his hammer, he felt his strength draining away.
The iron sword was almost complete, but suddenly his arm felt weak, and the iron hammer he had raised high above his head suddenly crashed to the ground.
When he tried to pick it up again, he found that he could not make it budge no matter how he tried.
“Oh heavens above, why do you do this to me? It’s just one final order, won’t you let me complete it? The frontline warriors need these weapons to fight the beasts!”
Lin Feng sat limply on the ground, his withered hands still wrapped around the handle of the hammer. With the last of his strength, he tried to lift it.
However, the hammer, which weighed only over a dozen pounds, suddenly felt as heavy as a ton.
No matter how much he exerted his strength, he just could not move it.
“Thank you, old friend.” Lin Feng could feel the change in his body, and he finally stopped resisting.
This iron hammer had stayed with him his entire life. At the very least, he was glad that it would follow him to the end.
Just as Lin Feng was awaiting his fate, just as he was slowly planning to pass away with his hammer, however, he heard an electronic jingle in his head.
[Ding! God-level Blacksmith System activated. Verifying host…]
[Ding! God-level Blacksmith System verification complete.]
Lin Feng was about to close his eyes and go to sleep with his hammer in his arms, but he suddenly woke up again, his eyes open, bright and sharp.
Immediately after that, though, the joy in his heart vanished without a trace.
He was already on his deathbed, and he could not even raise his hammer. So what if he did obtain a system?
[Ding! The host has received a beginner’s prize. Claim?] The system notification jingle rang again.
“Sure,” Lin Feng said calmly.
He was dying, yes, but he did want to see what the heavens had in store for him.
Besides, there was a spark of hope in his heart now as well.
If he could become a cultivator, he could extend his lifespan as well. It was not rare for powerful martial artists to live for several centuries.
[Ding! Congratulations, you have received God-level Forgery and Holy Flame!
[God-level Forgery: Forge any weapon with ease.]
[Holy Flame: A pure and holy fire that can completely purify any forgery material, greatly enhancing the quality of the equipment forged.]
Information flooded Lin Feng’s mind.
The next second, he felt an unprecedented clarity in his brain. All of his previous doubts and questions about forgery were now answered in his eyes.
If he could still lift his hammer now, he would certainly be able to forge weapons several times stronger than before.
If he had obtained this God-level Blacksmith System a few years ago, he would definitely be able to become a top-tier blacksmith, forging more and stronger weapons to help humanity fight against the demonic beasts.
Of course, there were no ‘ifs’ in life.
Next, a ball of fire appeared before him, dancing in mid-air as though greeting him.
Lin Feng instinctively reached out his hand.
The flames immediately landed on his wrinkled palm.
What happened next took him by surprise.
His withered branch of a hand slowly filled up again after the Holy Flame touched it, regaining some color and life.
Lin Feng was instantly stunned.
After a while, it was not just his palm that grew younger. His arm seemed to be slowly recovering too.
At the same time, he could feel his body gradually coming back to life.
Lin Feng looked at the Holy Flame with unspeakable gratitude, a smile he could not hide spreading across his face.
After a long time, the previously-spent Lin Feng felt his body fill up with energy, as though there was an endless source somewhere inside him waiting to be used.
However, he was patient. He carefully felt the changes happening in his body.
By now, he had grown at least thirty years younger.
It was all thanks to that Holy Flame.
After he calmed down, he was still a little dissatisfied.
The Holy Flame only changed his body and gave him some life back, but what about next time?
Would it still work next time?
Lin Feng could not be sure.
If it did not work, he would still meet his inevitable death.
“What should I do? The system can only help me with my forging, not any cultivation. I still can’t extend my lifespan,” Lin Feng murmured, frowning to himself.
All of a sudden, a bold idea came to him, and his eyes gleamed.
“I know! Forging a weapon counts as forgery, but so does forging my body, right? The Holy Flame can alter my body, so does that mean that I can forge my own body as though it’s a weapon?
“Using my own body as my materials, I can forge myself into the ultimate weapon and obtain unbelievable strength. I might even be able to increase my lifespan.”
A short while ago, he would have thought that he had lost his mind.
Now, though, he knew he was perfectly sane.
Upon obtaining the God-level Blacksmith System, especially after his body was altered by the Holy Flame, he knew that his idea was more than a little plausible.
More importantly, this way he would not only be able to continue forging weapons, he might even be able to join the frontline battles himself.
Once he had that inkling of an idea, it developed into an unstoppable momentum.
He had to give it a try. Even if failure meant death, he was not afraid.
After all, he was already prepared to die before the system appeared in his mind.
He did not particularly mind dying again.